The spokesperson of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces, Brig. Flavia Byekwaso has turned down prayers from journalists calling for the trial of the errant military commander, Napoleon Namanya who reportedly ordered the walloping of journalists that were covering the National Unity Platform party leader, Kyagulanyi Ssentamu Robert aka Bobi Wine as he delivered a petition to the Kololo based UN human rights Commission offices.
According to Byekwaso, the journalists cannot decide for the army on whom should be punished. “We don’t take orders from civilians. We are an army with a protocol to follow,” she said in an interview with media as she responded to calls of having Lt. Namanya apprehended. “First of all, we did not see the commander personally harming any journalist and therefore he cannot be held responsible. I want any journalist to come out with evidence that he or she was thumped by the commander. Otherwise for now we will not charge him,” she maintains.
Despite the widespread backlash from the public over the escalating brutality, the UPDF has persistently declined to admit its mistakes while manning most of its operations. Just today on the airwaves of Nxt Radio, the former army spokesperson Felix Kulayigye said the journalists were thumped because one of them charged at an officer on duty. “One of them hit our soldier with a flat tyre on a Boda Boda. This is why others on duty responded with proportionate force,” Kulayigye said.